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602 of 667 people found the following review helpful
on September 22, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I thought the principal behind the book was something that will help virtually every married couple. My husband and I laughed at sections b/c we found some of the anecdotes so spot on to our daily lives. Eggerichs clearly explained to us why we keep going through the "Crazy Cycle." The Respect/Love needs in men/women is potentially a marriage saver or breaker.

I have 2 constructive criticisms of the book. I still recommend this book, however I do give these caveats:

1. This book talks as if men know how to love their wives. There may be a million books out there on how to do it, but we didn't have those. My husband and I were reading this one. And I grew weary of hearing how women needed to learn to respect their husbands. Frankly, I grasped the principal within the first few pages. After a few chapters, I felt like rolling my eyes a little. Because he paid so little attention to talking about how men should love their wives, it felt like that part was very trivialized. I understand that was not the point, however, the title was "Love & Respect", not just "Respect."

2. I would have liked more tangible examples of exactly what it means to "Respect" my husband. I want to do it. And he made it clear that "nagging, complaining, and whining" at him were disrespectful. But I need more examples. What are the active things I can do? Is it disrespectful to remind my husband to take the garbage out the night before? If it is, then how do I make sure the task gets done w/out reminding him? It isn't an issue of control, but I have to get the kids out the door in the morning and I need help and I need him to do this one thing. Make sense? I need to know how to have those discussions w/out disrespecing him.

I hestitate to use this as a small group book b/c it is so one-sided. And it tends to repeat itself. Again, I got the principal pretty quickly. And as good as it is, after a while, enough is enough. Another reviewer said it felt a bit like a brochure for the conference. That is exactly how I felt.

A good book? Yes. A helpful principle? Absolutely. A must-read? Maybe. But definitely helpful to a Christian marriage and therefore, I do and would recommend it.
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86 of 93 people found the following review helpful
on May 4, 2006
Format: Paperback
This book is full of insight. I've been married for 17 years to a wonderful man that I have always respected. I never realized, however, how many little things I said and did that made him feel so belittled. (And he certainly didn't know how to share that with me!) It really is like learning to speak a different language. And although I KNEW he loved me, I also felt that something was missing. It's not easy to change so many years of habit, but understanding why we each react the way we do has made it easier to connect with one another. I whole-heartedly recommend this book, especially if your goal is to make your spouse more happy, and so have a more peaceful marriage. Even if you think you can never respect your husband, or your wife is unlovable, there is valuable knowledge to be gained here.
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780 of 885 people found the following review helpful
on March 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The good:

1) I like the connection between love and respect. Every time he says husbands need respect and wives need love, you have to translate that mentally into *both* husbands *and* wives need love *and* respect, but the basic premise is a good one -- the Christian understanding of love indicates an attitude of honoring, respecting, and blessing the other person.

2) The crazy cycle and reward cycle. This is one of the most important things most couples could learn. Our behaviors are self-reinforcing and good things to lead to more good things in a cycle. Likewise, bad things often lead to more bad things. The good news is that we serve a God of redemption and just as the gospel message teaches us that Christ breaks us out of a cycle of sin, God can redeem broken marriages and break them out of destructive cycles.

3) For *some* couples, a disrespectful attitude toward the husband or an unloving attitude toward the wife *is* the problem. For those relationships, I imagine they would benefit greatly from this book.

The not-so-good:

1) As mentioned by several reviewers already, the book is incredibly sexist. I started making a `W' in the margins when Dr. Eggerichs blamed the wife for the problem and a `H' when he blamed the husband. Skimming back through, it's about 90% W's. Just about any time he says something negative about the husband, you are almost guaranteed to get a follow-up sentence about how his wife's pettiness or nagging or belittling comments or criticizing or bitterness or whatever was really the root cause of the husband's behavior. At times, it was to the point I thought he was emasculating men by making us out to be powerless -- we can't take responsibility for our own behavior because every issue is probably our wife's fault anyway.

2) It's kindof a continuation of #1, but I honestly can't believe he found a man and a *woman* to blame the husband's marital infidelity on the wife. Finding a man who wants to justify his immorality by blaming his wife shouldn't be too hard, but Dr. Eggerichs found a woman who blamed *herself* for her husband's philandering. The idea that a man has so little control over his own actions that he is to be expected to wander if his wife doesn't `put out' often enough is just galling.

3) The narrowness of the focus. As I mentioned above, a disrespected husband or unloved wife is a problem for some couples. But there's lots of reasons marriages struggle, and disrespect is only one of the possibilities. Dr. Eggerichs doesn't acknowledge that at all.

4) He spends quite a bit of energy being defensive about it, so Dr. Eggerichs clearly realizes that the idea of unconditional respect has some problems. I honestly don't see the appeal of unconditional respect. If I want respect from my wife (which I most certainly do!), I will act in a way that *deserves* respect. Why would I demand her unconditional respect regardless of my actions unless I couldn't be bothered to earn it?
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover
On the whole, the book was amazing. My husband and I read it out loud to each other and discussed it all along the way. We learned new insights into each other's needs that have been very helpful. We've been applying what we learned to our lives now for months and it's made a real difference. One thing, though, we both disagreed to the words "Love" and "Respect." We changed them, for ourselves, to "Cherish" and "Admire." We felt that more accurately describes what we need from each other. My husband can love our children, love his parents, love my meatloaf, and I DO want him to love me, but even above that I want him to cherish me--I desperately want him to cherish me. My children love me, my friends love me, but from my husband . . . I need even more. We also both agreed that no matter what anyone says, respect must be earned. It means a lot to him that I respect him, but he truly needs more than that from me . . . he needs to be admired by the woman he loves, the woman whose opinion matters most to him.
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201 of 254 people found the following review helpful
on March 19, 2011
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
While the overall idea is a good one, I strongly agree with other reviewers that the way the author excuses sinful behavior is unacceptable. I found his pride and the repetitive nature of his message to be irritating but was willing to focus on the positive in the book. However after reading that men cheat because their wives don't have sex with them enough and that women should listen to their men's admiration of other women's "assets" with compassion and not judgement, along with multiple other situations where men's actions are excused as "natural" and "to be expected" I find I absolutely can NOT recommend this book to anyone.

In fact I am extremely disappointed by the many positive reviews by Christian couples seen here. How can anyone in good conscience recommend a book that so degrades women? I understand that men are turned on by the visual, but Jesus challenges them to fight those urges, and I absolutely do not agree that women should accept that their husband will look lustfully at another woman as "natural" and encourage him to share those struggles with her! Should women be sympathetic of their husband's struggles...yes! Should they pray that God give their husbands the strength to resist temptation...yes! Is it easier on husbands if their needs are met...perhaps. However I know plenty of couples with healthy sex lives whose husbands still struggle with pornography, flirting with other women, looking at other women lustfully etc. The issue is the MAN's heart and the MAN's walk with his Lord and Saviour, not his wife's ability and willingness to sleep with him every 72hrs on schedule. Seriously. If nothing else this book will only allow men struggling with the above issues to excuse, not own up to and change, their behavior.

I am very disappointed and saddened that so many reviewers seem to think this book is the answer to their marital problems. There are better, far less prideful marriage books out there. If you are wondering whether to read this one, please do not waste your time!
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153 of 195 people found the following review helpful
on February 27, 2006
Format: Hardcover
This book includes a DVD that is a 30 minute book promotion. It is NOT the Love & Respect Conference. If you want the official Love & Respect Conference on DVD you have to order it from [...]
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135 of 173 people found the following review helpful
on October 23, 2010
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
As a Christian licensed marriage and family therapist, I would never recommend this book to any one. He has a couple of good points, such as men are energized when a wife just sits with him, and women want to connect with their husbands by listening and talking. He claims men want respect and women want love. This concept is too rigid. Both men and women want love and respect. I believe God is not pleased at all with the attitude of the author. He is disrespectful when he portrays women in a very negative light. He describes women as being contemptuous, complaining, and negative through out the book, while he portraying men as helpful and serving. He tells women it is a command that they unconditionally respect their husbands, while he is disrespectful to women through out the entire book.
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145 of 186 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book was recommended to us by our counselor. She is recommending it to every single one of the couples she counsels or has counseled. That's how much she believes in this book. My husband and I read the introduction and knew right away that it was going to help us build a stronger foundation and have a better marriage. The concept is so simple - he needs respect and she needs to know she's loved - but you'll have an A-HA moment and know that it's so very true. The book will feel like it's talking directly to you. Every couple should read this book - happy couples and couples in trouble.
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159 of 206 people found the following review helpful
on January 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I was terribly disappointed by this book. Lots of fluff, so little substance.

The premise comes from Ephesians 5:33 "Nevertheless, each one of you must also love his own wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband." This is true, but you can gain much more by reading the fifth chapter of the book of Ephesians than you'll ever gain by reading "Love & Respect"!

I've never been considered a feminist, but I was bothered by the author's stereotyping of women (and men!) and his offensive statements. Basically, the entire book revolves around the idea that women 'feel', men 'think', and then they misunderstand each other.

Now, men and women are inherently different. Physically, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually different. But Eggerichs offers such a narrow perspective in this book. Eggerichs thinks he's got it all figured out: how men and women differ in their needs, desires, feelings, emotions, and communication. My fiancé and I agree that we both need love and respect, and neither one of us really fits into his mold. Eggerichs presents a gross oversimplification (and distortion) of what marital love is.
What he really does is insult the intelligence of the reader.

Here's one example. Eggerichs states: "The cold, hard truth is that men are often lured into affairs because they are sexually deprived at home."

Let's break this down, dissect this statement, and decide why and in how many ways it's WRONG. Men are NOT "lured into affairs" like the poor vulnerable mariners helplessly seduced to their deaths by Sirens. Men AND WOMEN are sometimes strong in the face of temptation, and sometimes vulnerable. But there's more than sexual temptation that causes an extramarital affair. Many factors can contribute to infidelity in marriage, but there's much more to adultery than a lack of sexual gratification. The author makes no mention of the serious sin of adultery, and the sacred Marriage Vows broken by the adulterer.... Instead shifts the blame to the woman who isn't fulfilling her husband's needs. And incidentally, Dr. Eggerichs seems to be entirely unaware that women have sexual desires too. At least he makes no mention of it in his book. Anyway, the point the author neglects is that we are ALL are accountable for our own actions. We are all responsible for making our own decisions, and facing our consequences.
Also, for a Christian author, Eggerichs spends very little time talking about Christ and the sacredness of Marriage... I guess he compensates by dotting his book with out-of-context Scripture passages.

RECOMMENDATION:

I highly recommend "LOVE AND RESPONSIBILITY" by Karol Wojtyla. It's brilliantly written, with a truly Christian perspective on love and sexuality. Much more insightful, and with much more depth than Eggerichs' book. Wojtyla presented a perspective on love with true emphasis on the sanctity of marriage and human life. And please don't assume that it's just for Catholics. Though author Karol Wojtyla would later become Pope John Paul II, the message is universal. Here's an excerpt:
[...]
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118 of 153 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Not a fan of this at all. We are watching the DVD series as part of small group and a friend bought the book for me as well. We watched the series though the 3rd DVD and were following along in the book. These were omissions I noted up until that point. We have returned the DVD series back to the church and I have tossed the book.

1. He leaves out the following scripture: 1 Peter 3:7-8 Likewise, you husbands should live with your wives in understanding, showing RESPECT to the weaker FEMALE sex, since we are joint heirs of the gift of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered. Where is this in his book or on his DVD series?

2. Also he states that men know they are loved, women aren't sure. So doesn't it make sense that men would respond they want respect in his survey question? They already know they are loved! Women still don't know, so they are still trying to get love. But in the meantime, these women that feel unloved are also supposed to be working on respecting their husbands. What is the motivation? If it is based on fear? Then this would not be biblical as stated in 1 John. And by fear I mean, fear of their husbands leaving.

3. Proverbs 5:18 says "let you manhood be a blessing, rejoice in the wife of your youth. Let her charms and tender embrace satisfy you. Let HER LOVE ALONE fill you with delight". Where does it say respect? Also Proverbs 31 gives an excellent overview of "an ideal wife" Where is the mention of this?

4. He states that women are now divorcing twice as often as men. The statistic is still the same, roughly 50%, but women are initiating it more then men. Why? Just google it. Advice being given to men by attorneys. Women need to start the divorce process to start receiving child support. 75% of women have to have their ex-husbands wages garnished. This is the guy that was supposedly willing to die for you and now doesn't want to pay child support?

5. Men would die for you - women do you get it? Yes, because I would die for my children. We get it, not an only male trait.

6. He states repeatedly "women these are your sons" and honestly it drew me back in every time. I have sons and I want them to have a good married life. I have been blessed to have married my college sweet heart and we have been together 23 years, so I want the same for my sons. But when he gives the example of the guy throwing the plate at his wife's head, I was expecting "men, these are your daughters would you want someone to do that to her?" Instead we got the guy cooled off in jail, the wife sent the author of Love and Respect an email and didn't even mention it in the email. Emerson shook his head like "wow that's a women". And they discovered that it was all do to not enough love and respect. Sound like prideful behavior to me.

7. Men don't really need to talk and either do women, it's not really biblical according to the author. He states a study where pairs of men or women were put into a room and observed. Men didn't really talk, women talked up a storm. Men sat shoulder to shoulder and just got their points across. I'm not really disputing this, but is that what Jesus did or did he tell his apostles stories. Did he preach on the mount? Who did he say was the one who understood more about listening Mary or Martha? Jesus TALKED and SHARED. He didn't sit and have his "energy" absorbed. So really women are supposed to do this? We're supposed to sit there in silence and watch our husband paint and work on their cars? Who is watching the kids in this scenario? That's irresponsible and a selfish recommendation on his part.

The study he cites looked at boy/men pairs and girl/women pairs at different age groups from ages 5-6 through age 21. The group that communicated most effectively were 16 year old boys. So he suggests this is how married couples should communicate. Again, irresponsible. This type of communication was NOT as effective in the male groups at the older ages or younger ages, just at age 16 - meaning it wasn't even a great way to communicate for older male adults. He lost a lot of credibility since there are wonderful studies between married men and women to indicate effective communications styles, however, they wouldn't fit into his view of how women should be seen but not heard. 16 year old boys are also really great at playing video games and sleeping in late. Should married couples emulate that as well?

8. He misquotes Chapter 5 of Timothy and states it references how men are to treat their wives and how wives are to respond. This entire chapter is about widows, not about married couples.

9. States women are suing for sexual harassment if a man opens a door for them. My husband has to be aware of sexual harassment policy at his work and he showed me the presentation. This is used as an example of GOOD and COURTEOUS gestures between men and women. Emerson did not provide a source and I could not find a single reference when I googled. Did anyone else? Just curious.

10. This book should be called "Love and Pride" not "Love and Respect" for he is using a modern day definition of respect not what was intended in the bible. Jesus loved and respected his church and he did it without expecting anything in return. He never demanded it, he loved and nurtured it and when we don't today, what happens? People leave the church. Didn't Jesus share his power. Didn't he say to be a servant. Didn't Jesus even share with Judas, who he KNEW was going to betray him? Aren't men the "Jesus" in the relationship and women the "church". If we follow the modern day definition of respect, then we cannot understand why Jesus did that. Eggerich is really missing the mark here. Quotes some bible verses but really misses the point of the bible. He is too busy seeing the speck in the eyes of women to notice the giant two by four sticking out of his.

11. Boiling down emotions to only two - Love and Respect didn't work throughout the bible either. Jesus was passionate with the money changers. People felt joy, peace, sometimes disappointment. This to me was the biggest issue. I have never felt that my husband doesn't love or respect me and he never felt that way either. But it was the only two options the author provided. We have felt anger, pride, hypocrisy, as well as a plethora of positive emotions. Just because my husband and I don't agree doesn't mean he doesn't love me and I have never interpreted it that way. Either did others in my study. Again, a flawed question. When you only give people two options and they have to pick one, then they do. He designed the question that way to fit neatly into his black and white curriculum.

We thought we could not be the only Christians thinking this and after a quick google search where I found this link: . He outlines 21 points - points I didn't even mention on why this is rubbish. He states this is a "needs based" not really biblically based series. We agreed. I am outlining our concerns to the deacon of my church as well as providing the 12 page paper written by Mark at hope for life ministries. My hope is that they not adopt this series.
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